Upgraded UC gives University higher grade of comms

Scalable IP based phone system offers new feautres whilst protecting existing PBX investment

As part of a plan to process student enquiries more effectively especially during high call volumes, the University of Sheffield has upgraded is voice network as part of a wider IT expansion and upgrade programme.

The upgrade, to Avaya’s Communications Manager 5.0, is designed to enable the University of Sheffield to move to a more resilient, scalable IP based phone system, while still protecting the investment made over the last decade in traditional PBX communications systems.

The new unified communications (UC) platform is fundamentally designed to help the University offer a better service to students during busy times such as clearing and enrolment. Call centre functionality built into Communications Manger enables the University to process student enquiries far more speedily than would have been possible when, often, high call volumes resulted in bottle necks and long call waiting times.

To date 10,000 voice connections have been moved to the new IP-based communications  system and University says that jobs such as adding a new voice extension or moving phones, which previously would have taken a couple of hours, now take a matter of minutes.

Specifically, the University estimates that this represents time savings of between 75-90% to the team responsible for voice and data services at the university. Furthermore, the upgrade gives the University the capacity to increase the number of voice and data connections by 20% and to move to a converged network.

Explaining the move, Mark Franklin, Voice and Data Support Manager, University of Sheffield , said, “While the old system had served us very well we recognised the need for an upgrade. With the advent of UC and the University’s own expansion plans we needed a solid foundation upon which we could build future functionality whilst still protecting our existing investment.  What’s more we needed something that would integrate with our existing set up. Avaya came up trumps on all accounts.”

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